Here Be Dragons: The Scientific Quest for Extraterrestrial Life

❴Reading❵ ➶ Here Be Dragons: The Scientific Quest for Extraterrestrial Life Author David Koerner – The discovery of life on other planets would be perhaps the most momentous revelation in human history disorienting and profound than either the Copernican or Darwinian revolutions which knocked the e The discovery of life on Dragons: The Kindle × other planets would be perhaps the most momentous revelation in human history disorienting and profound than either the Copernican Here Be PDF or or Darwinian revolutions which knocked the earth from the center of the universe and humankind from its position of lofty self regard In Here Be Be Dragons: The PDF/EPUB ë Dragons astronomer David Koerner and neurobiologist Simon LeVay offer a scientifically compelling and colorful account of the search for life beyond Earth The authors survey Be Dragons: The Scientific Quest MOBI :ò the work of biologists cosmologists computer theorists NASA engineers SETI researchers roboticists and UFO enthusiasts and debunkers as they attempt to answer the greatest remaining uestion facing humankind Are we alone From their safe haven of skepticism the authors venture into the rough seas of speculation where theory and evidence run the gamut from hard science to hocus pocus Arguing that the universe is spectacularly suited for the evolution of living creatures Koerner and LeVay give us ringside seats at the great debates of Big Science The contenitous arguments about what really happens in evolution the acrimonious UFO controversy and the debate over intelligence versus artificial intelligence shed new light on the wildly divergent claims about the universe and life's place in it The authors argue that while no direct evidence of Be Dragons: The Scientific Quest MOBI :ò extraterrestrial life yet exists habitats and chemical building blocks for life abound in the universe A wealth of new astronomical techniues and space missions may provide this evidence early in the next century Lucidly written and scientifically rigorous Here Be Dragons presents everything we know thus far about the emergence of intelligent life here on earth and perhaps beyond.Here Be Dragons: The Scientific Quest for Extraterrestrial Life


Here Be Dragons: The Scientific Quest for Extraterrestrial
  • Hardcover
  • 272 pages
  • Here Be Dragons: The Scientific Quest for Extraterrestrial Life
  • David Koerner
  • English
  • 12 March 2014
  • 9780195128529

10 thoughts on “Here Be Dragons: The Scientific Quest for Extraterrestrial Life

  1. says:

    Very interesting Could have been dumb but it was a very scientific approach

  2. says:

    Your great grandmother was a hyperthermophilic bacteria living near a hot vent and your great grandfather may have been an amino acid arriving on a meteorThese are just some of the interesting proposals that astronomer David Koerner and neurobiologist Simon LeVay have collected here in this recent overview on the origins of life in our universe and the liklyhood of other life existing outside our planet I remember reading Isaac Azimov's ETI the search for Extra Terrestrial Intellience 30 years ago and many of the calculations he performed are updated here current to the late nineties It explores the supernova ejected dusts of organic chemical precursers in the condensation clouds of starbirth and how the acretion disc of solar systems seem to regularly form planets and explores everything from primordial soup models of life beginnings the RNA from clay hypothesis possible autocatylitic genetic imitations and extreme conditions where life may exist They explore the whacky UFO's and the not so whacky deep space chemistry Altogether this is a fun and pacy read for the scientifically literate and the interested layperson I would recommend

  3. says:

    SparklingWhat I especially liked about Here Be Dragons was how every chapter was interesting Beginning with Origins about possible habitats for life from scum ponds to interstellar dust clouds to deep sea ocean vents in Chapter 2 to the evolution of solar systems in Chapter 4 to the search for life beyond the sun the SETI experience the UFO phenomena in a chapter entitled Dreamland to the possibility of non carbon based life in Chapter 9 Exotica Life as We Don't Know It the text is lively Chapter 3 is about The Incredible Shrinking Martians who have alas lost their canals and greeneryKoerner and LeVay achieve this engaging readability by presenting contrasting viewpoints from state of the art scientists often in disagreement Thus we have paleontologists Stephen Jay Gould and Simon Conway Morris disagreeing on how big a factor chance is in evolution and how that might affect the prospects for the development of extraterrestrial intelligence Frank Drake and the late Carl Sagan who are optimistic about the possibility of contacting ETI are paired off against people like Jared Diamond Ben Zuckerman Ernst Mayr and Martin Ryle who are notOther books about science try to be interesting by presenting the personalities of science but what they miss is the conflicts Koerner and LeVay do not They even begin the book with a visit to the Museum of Creation and Earth History in Santee California with its Six Days of Creation exhibits the Darwinian fish on their vehicle hopefully not noticed They immediately contrast this with a visit to the nearby NASA Specialized Center of Research and Training in Exobiology at La Jolla Additionally they sprinkle the narrative with some interesting sometimes irreverent observations For example on pages 162 163 they toss in a witty jab at Stephen Jay Gould a brilliant man who sometimes takes himself a little too seriously At issue is the famous and beloved Drake euation The authors write 'It's not an euation' Stephen Gould tells us baldly adding his trademark chuckle to let us know that he has finally put the thing out of its misery At another point they tell us that Frank Drake's license plate reads N ELS L which is Drake's emphatic way of asserting his belief that we are not aloneTruthfully though some of this was a little over my head in particular the material about planet finding techniues including the photometric method the radial velocity method and interferometry I don't think that's a shortcoming of the book but rather a shortcoming on my part However it didn't help that the color plates are misnumbered Perhaps in the paperback edition that is fixed Also difficult but interesting was the material about Stuart Kauffman's autocatalytic sets of replicating molecules as precursors of RNA and DNAI want to say one thing about the anthropic principle addressed in Chapter 9 We have a sampling of one A sampling of one is better than no sampling at all In fact the difference between no sampling at all and one sampling is greater than the difference between samplings one and two and two and threeetc It means something believe it We're here That implies that the universe had to be a certain way which excludes a whole bunch of presumably possible universes But if the universe were different perhaps some other creatures would be there rhapsodizing over just how miraculous all their coincidences are To get all thrilled about how everything in the universe had to be exactly so otherwise we wouldn't have arrived is like getting all thrilled at bridge because you were dealt exactly the cards you were dealt since the odds against getting exactly those thirteen individual cards are astronomicalI also like the tone of Here Be Dragons from the cartographers of old which is midway between dead earnestness and TGIF casual The prose is lively and witty and very readable while being informative in an exciting way I suspect a lot of hard work went into making this a book that the general public could get a lot out of I know I did Dennis Littrell author of “The World Is Not as We Think It Is”

  4. says:

    This book does a great job of showing how many different scientific pursuits can be tied into an interest in the uestion of life beyond Earth The authors David Koerner and Simon LeVay explore the possibilities of both non intelligent and intelligent life and show how an interest in extraterrestrials can stimulate closer research and deeper understanding of the only Life life system we know of currently in the universe The book provides good references for those interested in further reading on specific topics

  5. says:

    Are we alone in the Universe? A discussion on the likelihood of life elsewhere and if we'll ever find it By examining what we know about the universe and how life evolved here the chances for either may be bleak but that should not stop our curiosity

  6. says:

    Recaps information with interviews travelling to various parts of America relevant to ET life and includes many references to other works

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